Liberal Youth Wales

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Liberal Youth Wales
Ieuenctid Rhyddfrydol Cymru
IR Cymru
Chairperson Sara Lloyd Williams
Founded 2002 (as MIDR Cymru)
Headquarters Freedom Central, Ground Floor, Blake Court, Schooner Way, Cardiff, CF10 4DW
Ideology Liberalism,
Social liberalism,
Market liberalism,
British unionism
Mother party Welsh Liberal Democrats
United Kingdom affiliation Liberal Youth

Liberal Youth Wales (Welsh:Ieuenctid Rhyddfrydol Cymru, shortened to IR Cymru /ˈ ˈɑr ˈkəm.rɨ/), previously "Myfyrwyr a Ieuenctid y Democratiaid Rhyddfrydol Cymru - Liberal Democrat Youth and Students Wales"), is the youth wing of the Welsh Liberal Democrats. Its membership is open to any member of the Liberal Democrats living, working or studying in Wales and is either under 26 years of age or in full or part-time education above that age.[1]

The organisation has branches all over Wales, including affiliated branches at many Welsh universities.[2][3] IR Cymru campaigns for the aims of the Welsh Liberal Democrats and had members standing in the 2005 General Election and 2007 Welsh Assembly Election,[4] as well as many members who are also councillors across Wales.

It is also a part of the UK Federal Liberal Youth. In April 2009, MIDR Cymru rebranded and relaunched as IR Cymru.[5][6]


IR Cymru was founded in 2002 as MIDR Cymru /ˈmɪ.də ˈkəm.rɨ/ short for the Welsh Myfyrwyr a Ieuenctid y Democratiaid Rhyddfrydol Cymru - the Welsh branch of LDYS (Liberal Democrat Youth and Students Wales).

In 2008 the federal LDYS was re-branded as Liberal Youth. MIDR Cymru followed this in 2009, becoming IR Cymru / Liberal Youth Wales.

List of Chairs[edit]

Name Term of Office Branch Notes
Lloyd Williams, SaraSara Lloyd Williams 2012 (March - November) 2015 (October) - present Arfon Sara was the 2015 Liberal Democrat candidate for Carmarthen East and Dinefwr.[7]
Bennett, SamuelSamuel Bennett 2012 (November) – 2015 Brecon and Radnorshire Served Three Terms
Rees, Samuel EllisSamuel Ellis Rees 2012 (January - March) Swansea University Interim chair during reorganisation
Vacant 2011-12 n/a No chair was elected for this term.
Smith, MattMatt Smith 2010-11 University of Glamorgan[8] Matt Smith was the 2010 Liberal Democrat candidate for Blaenau Gwent.[9]
Morgan-Ash, RichardRichard Morgan-Ash 2009-10 Aberystwyth University
Shefman, CoreyCorey Shefman 2008-09 Cardiff University Presided over the renaming of MIDR Cymru to IR Cymru.
Harding, PaulPaul Harding 2007-08 Aberystwyth University
Smith, AdiAdi Smith 2005-07 Aberystwyth University Served two terms.
Green, SarahSarah Green 2004-05 Aberystwyth University[10]
Bourne, DavidDavid Bourne 2003-04 Aberystwyth University
Jones, MattMatt Jones 2002-03

Internal organisation[edit]

IR Cymru is part of the federal structure of Liberal Youth and its Chair is the Welsh Convenor of that organisation. IR Cymru is responsible for tailoring LY campaigns to match political circumstances in Wales, and for developing indigenous campaigns that reflect the status of wales in the United Kingdom. It also serves as an advisory body to the Welsh Liberal Democrats on youth issues.

The Organisation is run by an executive committee consisting of a Chair, Vice-Chair, Treasurer, Communications Officer, Policy Officer, Campaigns Officer and Young Members' Representative (all elected annually by all-member ballot) and a Regional Development Officer (appointed by the Membership and Outreach Committee). The Membership and Outreach Committee is made up of a Regional Representative from each of the five Welsh Assembly Regions, the Young Members' Representative, and one elected representative from each affiliated IR Cymru branch. Other standing committees include an NUS Committee, a Policy and Conference Committee and a Campaigns Committee.

Current Executive Committee[edit]

The IR Cymru elections during December 2014 saw the re-election of Samuel Bennett for a third term since beginning his role as chairperson in November 2012. The latest executive, announced on December 15th 2014, are listed below.

Position Name
Chair Samuel Bennett
Vice Chair & Treasurer Michael Wallace
Policy Officer Rhys Taylor
Communications Officer Jake Falcon
Campaigns Officer Matthew Palmer and Jade Smith (job share)
Branch Officer Daniel Naughton
Non-portfolio Officer Chloe Hutchinson


As of July 2012, IR Cymru has branches in Bangor, Ceredigion, and Swansea. With development towards branches in Cardiff and Wrexham.[11]

Within the Welsh Liberal Democrats[edit]

IR Cymru is a Specified Associated Organisation (SAO) of the Welsh Liberal Democrats, with two seats on the Welsh Liberal Democrat National Executive Committee and one seat on each of the Party's other Standing Committees (Policy, Campaigns & Candidates and Conference Committees).


Campaigning in Cardiff South with Jenny Willott.

IR Cymru has supported all the main campaigns from federal Liberal Youth. In addition, they are currently leading a campaign against homophobic bullying, based around a motion they passed at the Welsh Liberal Democrat conference in Spring.

Members of IR Cymru have also stood in public elections and the recent 2012 local elections saw election victories for IR Cymru in Bangor.[12]


Corey Shefman speaking at the Relaunch of IR Cymru, April 2009.

IR Cymru has successfully proposed motions to the Welsh Party Conference. At the Wrexham conference in Spring 2006 IR Cymru (as MIDR Cymru) successfully proposed a motion against Nuclear power,[13] and a second motion supporting micro-generation schemes. At the Aberystwyth conference in Autumn 2006, they successfully amended a motion on housing to reflect the particular difficulties faced by young people.

In Spring 2009, the re-branded IR Cymru put forward a successful motion which called for the Welsh Assembly to provide better compulsory education for teenagers on social and sex issues, and was partly aimed at tackling homophobic bullying.

In Spring 2013 the Welsh Liberal Democrats Party conference accepted motions on Subsidised Transport for Young People and Political Education within the Welsh Curriculum, proposed by the IR Cymru Executive Committee for 2013.

In the subsequent Spring conference in 2014 IR Cymru successfully proposed and passed a motion calling for more investment into Mental Health provision in Wales.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "2011 Constitution of IR Cymru - English Version" (PDF). Retrieved 2012-06-08. 
  2. ^ "University of Aberystwyth Liberal Democrats". Retrieved 2011-01-23. 
  3. ^ Cardiff Student Liberal Democrats[dead link]
  4. ^ Ben Lloyd in MIDR Cymru's 2006 Annual Report[dead link]
  5. ^ Spring 2009 Welsh Liberal Democrat conference agenda[dead link]
  6. ^ Goldsworthy, Ali (2009-04-22). "Alison Goldsworthy, post-conference blog interview with Elaine Bagshaw". Retrieved 2011-01-23. 
  7. ^ "Candidate for Carmarthen East and Dinefwr". Welsh Liberal Democrats. Retrieved 2015-09-05. 
  8. ^ "Matt Smith". UK Political Database. The Telegraph. Retrieved 16 March 2012. 
  9. ^ ", Matt Smith: Electoral history and profile". Guardian. Retrieved 2011-01-23. 
  10. ^ "Sarah Green". UK Political Database. The Telegraph. Retrieved 16 March 2012. 
  11. ^ "Branches". IR Cymru. Retrieved 3 July 2012. 
  12. ^ "Community / Town Council elections, 3 May 2012: results". Gwynedd Council. Retrieved 28 July 2012. 
  13. ^ "RedOrbit reports on the nuclear motion". 2006-03-10. Retrieved 2011-01-23. 

External links[edit]